Florida’s 46th governor is promising a busy start for his administration, including the possible removal of Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel and at least one of the three appointments to the Florida Supreme Court he’ll get to make once he takes office on Tuesday.
“We’ll definitely have some actions on a number of different fronts,” Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis promised reporters Monday afternoon. “I think you might be surprised at some of the fronts we’re looking at right now in that respect.”
DeSantis, who cancelled Tuesday afternoon’s inaugural parade so he could start work early, was asked specifically whether he’d take action this week on the future of Israel, who has been criticized for his department’s handling of the Parkland school shootings that killed 17 students and staff last February.
DeSantis suggested last week he could make a decision concerning the sheriff in his first week in office.
“There will be executive actions on a potentially a number of local officials in a relatively short time of taking office,” DeSantis commented without specifically mentioning Israel.
DeSantis says part of the problem with removing someone from office is that you have to find someone to replace the person being removed and he says that’s not always easy..
DeSantis said he expects to announce on Wednesday his choice for one of the three state Supreme Court vacancies that were created this month due to a mandatory age requirement for judges in Florida. The appointments are expected to slant the court to a more conservative position on issues. The three retiring justices, Barbara Pariente, Fred Lewis, and Peggy Quince represented the more liberal wing of the court for the past several years.
DeSantis also plans to focus on the recovery from Hurricane Michael in the Panhandle and in the coming days wants to visit that area to let the people there know they aren’t being forgotten in their efforts to rebuild their lives.
“Those people in northwest Florida are working their tail off. They’ve done a great job,but they need help,” DeSantis said. “I don’t want them to be forgotten and so we’re going to make sure they see me there and let them know it’s something that means a lot to me.”
DeSantis says he’ll also roll out some new environmental policies for the state.